Ava Speaks out about Suicide Prevention

I’m delighted and privileged to introduce 17 year old, Ava.

 

This articulate, wise, youthful storyteller has created an incredibly insightful video. I'm honoured that she’s given me permission to share her creative artistry and pertinent, timely message reaching out to anyone struggling with tough stuff on the topic of suicide. Thank you, Ava!  Together, she and I share a strong passion and desire to advocate for #mentalhealth support for ALL. , which Ava articulates powerfully.

 

“We belong as the main character in our own story and not every story needs to be written alone.” 

(Ava, 2021)

***Whether aged 17 or  57, from birth to death we must share our stories and support one another.

#StrongerTogether. 

"Be the main character in your story, not every story needs to be written alone."

                   Jocelyn’s Tips for Self-Advocacy / Peer Support

 

Regarding Suicide Prevention

 

***All views expressed here are my own. Please always consult your doctor and/or trusted individuals that support your mental health and well-being.

 

Are you struggling in silence, having thoughts about, or planning to kill yourself?  

Let's create a brave space to talk about suicide.  

Helpful questions:  

  • How are you doing? 

  • Are you thinking about killing yourself?

  • What does that look like for you? (Try to find out what's happening that makes them feel like that?)

  • Can we have a chat about it?

  • Do you want to be dead, or would you like something in your life to change?

  • May I share something about my personal experience? (If they say no, respect their no.)

  • How's that working for you?

  • Do you want to explore other things?

  • Do you want to do something about it?

  • Do you know how to get the help you need or can I help you find support and resources, you can reach out to?

Helpful actions:

  • Break the Silence,

  • Create brave spaces: Provide unbiased support and come alongside your friend with curiosity to listen and explore what they are telling you and support with informed choice and resources.

  • Listen to what isn't said,

  • Support self-determination and choice!  

  • Trust and cultivate feedback, share power (communicate with authenticity and transparency) to ensure accountability, and be human (have the courage to be vulnerable).

  • Pull away from understanding the diagnosis.

  • Remember its not about fix and solve, instead listen with curiosity!

  • See the person holistically; although you're experiencing different paths, and separate identities.

  • Be willing to sit in the discomfort with empathy, and connection.

  • Let them be the voice of the discussion.

Helpful comments:  

  • Don't say: "I understand."  Instead, say: I'm curious, and I care, which offer relatability, hope and recoverability.

  • I've never experienced that. What's that like for you? 

  • I really want to be with you and explore what's going on for you with curiosity.

  • Do you want to do something about it?

  • I come without an agenda to be with you.

  • I know others who have been able to get through this.

  • Can I stay with you while you call the suicide hotline? Encourage them to seek supports they choose.

  • Can I stay with your and call the suicide hotline for you? Go alongside as they seek supports.

  • I need to tell you, I have to to report this, if you don't. ***Tell them, be really honest and open, before your report. Give them the opportunity for self-determination and to seek support for themselves. 

Resources

Canadian Suicide Prevention Service 1-833-456-4566

Kids Help Line B.C. 1-800-668-6868

United States: National Suicide & Crisis Hotline - 1-800-273-8255

#mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealthsupport #mentalhealthrecovery
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